Southern Vietnamese Dialect

Southern Vietnamese Dialect

While many of the words remain the same, the Northern and Southern Vietnamese Dialect have significant differences. This page introduces you to some of the differences found when speaking the Southern Vietnamese Dialect. For those interested in learning how to speak the Southern Vietnamese Dialect, you can do so in our self-paced Online Vietnamese Language Course or with our Self-Study Course Books.

Southern Vietnamese Dialect


Unlike other Asian languages, the Vietnamese Language use a Latin-based alphabet system. Some of these alphabets and sounds are not used in the Vietnamese Language. But, many alphabets and sounds are the same, yet may correspond to a different alphabet in the Southern Vietnamese Dialect.


At first glance, the vowels are the same as the English vowels – A, E, I, O, U and Y. However, the vowel system is elongated with the use of marks that are similar, but not the same as, tone marks.


Vietnamese is a tonal language. Therefore, tone marks are used to differentiate between tones. While there are six distinctive tones: flat (ngang), up (sắc), down (huyền), question (hỏi), wavy (ngã), and dot (nặng) the Southern Vietnamese Dialect only uses five, nearly only four of these tones.

Consonant Clusters

There are beginning consonant cluster sounds and ending consonant cluster sounds. Both differ in sound when you are speaking Vietnamese based on the regional dialects.

Vowel Clusters

The Southern Vietnamese Dialect is a relaxed dialect. Therefore, in some ways it is easier to speak. However, the Southern Vietnamese Dialect is most notably different when vowel clusters are present as sounds may be omitted or swapped.


Some words in the Southern Vietnamese Dialect are different than the word used in other dialects. Some words may be a completely new word, while some are the same words used in other Vietnamese dialects, but with a different meaning.


Each dialect will sound a little or perhaps a lot different. However, when speaking Vietnamese in the Southern Vietnamese Dialect, you will follow the same grammatical speaking rules as the other dialects.


I hope you enjoyed this introduction to the Southern Vietnamese Dialect. If you would like to learn the Southern Vietnamese Dialect, please take our Online Vietnamese Language Course or with our Self-Study Course Books.